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Swimming

Phelps watches USA hoops

Posted by Marc J. Spears, Globe Staff August 18, 2008 12:52 PM

BEIJING -- Approximately 20 members of the USA swim team came out to Wukesong Arena to watch the USA men's basketball team play Germany tonight. Michael Phelps was invited to join the USA basketball team in their locker room following their 106-57 victory and here's some of the Q&A following the event:

What was it like hooking up with the men's basletball team tonight?

"It's cool. When we're swimming and we look up and see these guys, it's awesome to see them in the stands. We were all so excited it was like we can't lose in front of these guys, we're not losing a single race in front of these guys. Just being able to sit in here and hang out with these guys, it's cool to sit in here. These are the guys I'm always watching on tv. It's cool to siti nhere, hang our and be one of the guys."

Whose idea was it to come over and watch the men play tonight?

"I actually wanted to come and see one of the games before I left and this worked out perfectly in our scheduling, so I was able to come down here."

How many of your teammates joined you here tonight?

"About half our team came over tonight. We had a pretty big showing of the crew to cheer these guys on."

Did they put on a good show for you?

"Oh yeah. We destroyed them. It was a fun game to watch."

The Phelps Watch

Posted by Chris Forsberg, Boston.com Staff August 17, 2008 12:33 PM

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Michael Phelps on the medal stand after winning gold in the 400 IM. (Al Bello/Getty Images)

Michael Phelps won all eight potential gold medals he was seeking in Beijing, compiling a career Olympic-record total of 14 golds. Here's the rundown of the medals he won:

Mission accomplished . . .

  1. 400 individual medley. Easily picked up first gold with a world-record performance.
  2. 4 x 100 freestyle relay. Teammate Jason Lezak overcame France's Alain Bernard at the wall for a world-record victory.
  3. 200 freestyle. Ties career gold-medal record of nine, winning by more than a body length.
  4. 200 butterfly. He touched in 1 minute, 52.03 seconds, breaking his old mark of 1:52.09 set at last year's world championships in Australia. Gives him 10 golds for his career, putting him alone atop the career list.
  5. 4 x 200 freestyle relay. Beijing gold medal No. 5 (and career No. 11) came in easy fashion. With Phelps leading off, the American relay team of Phelps, Ryan Lochte, Ricky Berens and Peter Vanderkaay won in a world record time of 6:58.56, more than four seconds better than the previous mark.
  6. 200 individual medley. Phelps dominated right from the start of the 200-meter individual medley and won in 1 minute, 54.23 seconds. He knocked off his own mark of 1:54.80 set at last month's U.S. trials, his sixth world record of the games.
  7. 100 butterfly. Phelps beat Milorad Cavic of Serbia in the 100-meter butterfly by a hundredth of a second, setting an Olympic record in 50.58 seconds but snapping his streak of setting world records in each of his previous six gold-medal performances. With the win, Phelps matched Mark Spitz's record of seven gold medals in one games.
  8. 4 x 100-meter medley relay. Phelps and his teammates shattered the world record in the 4 x 100-meter medley relay, enabling Phelps to expunge countryman Mark Spitz's 1972 record for most golds at one Games.

Statements on Phelps

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 17, 2008 12:13 AM

BEIJING, China - Statement from U.S. Olympic Committee Chairman Peter Ueberroth:

"An extraordinary chapter in Olympic history has been written here in Beijing by one of the greatest athletes of all time. We could not be more proud of Michael, in the manner by which he competed, represented our country, and represented the Olympic Movement. The fact that his eighth medal was won in a team relay signifies Michael's commitment not only to his own quest, but to the importance of teamwork and representing his country."

Statement from U.S. Olympic Committee Chief Executive Officer Jim Scherr:

"It is fitting that at one of the most significant events of our generation, we have witnessed one of the greatest performances in Olympic history. Michael's record-breaking performance during these Games will inspire millions of people around the world to reach for their goals and aspire to greatness. He is an example of the very best values of the Olympic Movement and our country."

Phelps breaks record

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 17, 2008 12:04 AM

Dara Torres (Parkland, Calif.) earned her 12th Olympic medal as part of the 4x100m medley relay team that won the silver Sunday morning at the National Aquatics Center.

Swimming the anchor leg of the relay shortly after taking the silver in the 50m freestyle, Torres ties fellow swimmer Jenny Thompson for the most Olympic medals won by an American woman. The other members of the relay team were Natalie Coughlin (Lafayette, Calif.), Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.) and Christine Magnuson (Tinley Park, Ill.).

The gold medal went to Australia, which touched in a world record time of 3:52.69 to the 3:53.30 by the U.S. (which set an American record). China won the bronze with a 3:56.11.

Torres gets 12th medal

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 17, 2008 12:01 AM

Dara Torres (Parkland, Calif.) earned her 12th Olympic medal as part of the 4x100m medley relay team that won the silver Sunday morning at the National Aquatics Center.

Swimming the anchor leg of the relay shortly after taking the silver in the 50m freestyle, Torres ties fellow swimmer Jenny Thompson for the most Olympic medals won by an American woman. The other members of the relay team were Natalie Coughlin (Lafayette, Calif.), Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.) and Christine Magnuson (Tinley Park, Ill.).

The gold medal went to Australia, which touched in a world record time of 3:52.69 to the 3:53.30 by the U.S. (which set an American record). China won the bronze with a 3:56.11.

Torres gets silver

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 16, 2008 10:23 PM

Dara Torres (Parkland, Calif.) won the silver medal in the women's 50m freestyle event Sunday morning at the National Aquatics Center. Germany's Britta Steffen took the gold by the slimmest of margins with an Olympic record time of 24.06 seconds, just 0.01 ahead of Torres. Cate Campbell of Australia won the bronze medal with a time of 24.17 seconds. American Kara Lynn Joyce (Ann Arbor, Mich.) was sixth in a time of 24.63 seconds.

Coughlin gets bronze

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 14, 2008 11:17 PM

Natalie Coughlin (Lafayette, Calif.) won the bronze medal in the women's 100m freestyle at the National Aquatics Center Friday morning.

Phelps has sixth sense

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 14, 2008 11:05 PM

Michael Phelps (Baltimore, Md.) claimed his sixth gold medal of the 2008 Olympic Games by winning the men's 200m individual medley in a world record time of 1:54.23, breaking his own mark set in Omaha, Neb., on July 4 by 0.57 seconds.

The silver medal went to Laszlo Cseh of Hungary with a time of 1:56.52, 2.29 seconds off Phelps' pace and a mere 0.01 ahead of Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.), who won the bronze medal. It was Lochte's second medal of the morning after winning the 200m backstroke gold a half-hour prior.

More gold for U.S.

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 14, 2008 10:28 PM

Ryan Lochte (Daytona Beach, Fla.) and Aaron Peirsol (Irvine, Calif.) gave the U.S. gold and silver in the men's 200m backstroke Friday morning at the National Aquatics Center. Lochte covered the distance in 1:53.94, breaking the world record he shared with Peirsol by 0.38 seconds. Russia's Arkady Vyatchanin, who led at each of the three turns, held on to win the bronze with a 1:54.93.

Soni takes gold

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 14, 2008 10:09 PM

Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.) claimed the gold medal in the women's 200m breaststroke with a world record time of 2:20.22 Friday morning at the National Aquatics Center. Her effort took 0.32 seconds off the old standard, set by Australia's Leisel Jones on Feb. 1, 2006.

The silver medal went to Jones in a time of 2:22.05, 1.83 behind Soni, while Sara Nordenstam of Norway won the bronze with a 2:23.02.

US women upset

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 14, 2008 12:47 AM

The U.S. team of Allison Schmitt (Canton, Mich.), Natalie Coughlin (Lafayette, Calif.), Caroline Burckle (Louisville, Ky.) and Katie Hoff (Towson, Md.) captured bronze in the women’s 4x200m freestyle swimming event with a time of 7:46.33.

Australia’s finish of 7:44.31 was a world record and China placed second in 7:45.93.

The United States had previously held every gold medal in this event since it was first contested in 1996.

Another gold for Phelps

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 12, 2008 11:19 PM

The U.S. 800 relay team routed the competition and earned a gold medal. It is Phelps's fifth gold of the Games, and gives him an Olympic record 11 for his career.

Phelps wins again

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 12, 2008 10:22 PM

Michael Phelps just claimed his fourth gold medal, winning the 200 butterfly in world record time.

Vendt in line for gold

Posted by John Powers, Globe Staff August 12, 2008 11:44 AM

North Easton native Erik Vendt all but guaranteed himself his first swimming gold medal on Tuesday when the US men's 4x200-meter freestyle relay easily qualified with by far the fastest time for the Wednesday finals, where they're expected to win by as much as six seconds with Michael Phelps anchoring. Though Vendt, an alternate who swam third leg in the prelims, won't be one of the four men in the final, he'll still receive a medal. It'll be the third of his career, along with silvers from the 400 individual medley from 2000 and 2004.

Silver for Soni

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 11, 2008 11:01 PM

BEIJING -- Rebecca Soni (Plainsboro, N.J.) won the silver medal in the women's 100m breaststroke at the National Aquatics Center Tuesday morning. The gold went to Leisel Jones of Australia, while Mirna Jukic of Austria won the bronze.

Jones touched in an Olympic record time of 1:05.17, 1.56 ahead of Soni. The American had the second-fastest return lap to surge from fifth place at the turn to post a time of 1:06.73, 0.61 ahead of Jukic. Megan Hendrick (Tacoma, Wash.) finished fifth with a 1:07.62.

More U.S. gold

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 11, 2008 10:41 PM

BEIJING -- Aaron Piersol (Irvine, Calif.) led an American gold-silver finish in the men's 100m backstroke event at the National Aquatics Center Tuesday morning. Piersol posted a time of 52.54 seconds, breaking his own world record of 52.89, set July 1 at the U.S. Olympic Team Trials in Omaha, Neb. He finished 0.57 ahead of teammate Matt Grevers (Lake Forest, Ill.), who took the silver in 53.11 seconds. The bronze medal went to Russia's Arkady Vyatchanin, who touched in 53.18 seconds.

Phelps rolls

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 11, 2008 10:18 PM

BEIJING -- Michael Phelps just won his third gold medal in world record time in the men's 200 freestyle. It was a dominating performance from start to finish. It's now three down and five to go for the Baltimore native

Phelps gets another gold

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 10, 2008 11:34 PM

BEIJING -- The USA men's 4 x 100 relay team just set a world record in the finals of the event and beat France by .08 seconds.

Michael Phelps started of the race and was second following his turn. Garrett Weber-Gale made up the time in second portion.

Then Cullen Jones kept the team in the hunt finishing second on his leg and Jason Lezak's 46.06 split and his out stretched arms gave his team the victory.

You could tell the Americans had won as my collegues at the NY Times in the office next door screamed in excitement of the close finish.

Phelps wins first gold

Posted by Greg Lee, Globe Staff August 9, 2008 10:28 PM

BEIJING -- Swimmer Michael Phelps began his quest for eight gold medals this Olympiad with a bang, breaking the record in the 400 individual medley in 4 minutes 3.84 seconds to capture his first gold.

What to watch: Track & Swimming

Posted by Chris Forsberg, Boston.com Staff August 6, 2008 06:00 AM

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Dara Torres of the U.S. attends practice at the National Aquatics Centre. (Reuters)

Before departing for Beijing, the Globe's John Powers previewed the US Track & Field and Swimming teams, both of which are expected to bring home plenty of gold at the 2008 Games in Beijing.


Look for contributions from the following Globe Staffers in Beijing:

  • John Powers
  • Shira Springer
  • Bob Ryan
  • Marc J. Spears
  • Gregory Lee
  • Scott LaPierre
  • Patricia Wen
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